The trip down the west coast looks awesome! the contacts and links can be reached, from all theway across the country good going!
Spent one more night in Venice after Cory & Mel’s cell phones were stolen from their car. Finding new phones and organizing on the fly needed an extra day so….we went to another GA where I took pictures of the wonderful outside garden area where Venice holds their meetings. The setting is peaceful and tranquil.
Venice meetings are prompt, all votes on proposals are taken in a timely fashion and within an hour and a half the meeting was done start to finish. While some wanted more speak time others had pressing things to do afterward. Finding the right balance appears to be what most of the camps struggle with. When people use the GA platform for things not related it makes for a long meeting and the risk is that some will eventually leave. It’s important to keep on track, but also allow the less aggressive or less vocal to have time to share observations and thoughts, if they wish.
Because we are activists we tend to have strong feelings, strong personalities and are passionate about our cause. With that we find the meetings are usually “occupied” by a few who love to talk or have control, so it is necessary to have good time keepers. Our democratic process is about finding a balance and listening as much as talking all while keeping the big picture in mind. After all, we’re all working toward the same goal(s). It’s time to start working on solutions. Let’s take all this energy and put it toward making this a better world.
We participated in Occupy Venice GA last night, where there was lots of networking on behalf of the movement. It’s amazing how much talent there is in each camp. One of our missions is working toward gaining more public access so that we can continue to spread word to the masses! It was really great to hear the Venice is working on producing 30 and 60 second spots to do exactly this.
OTR will be working with Todd (West Hollywood) and others to build an “Occupy Portal” – a place where all the Occupy’s can find each other, connect to individual Occupy websites, blog, ask questions, share videos and pictures. You’ll be able to see a “what’s happening” in each city with their calendars along with an area for sharing documents. We’re looking for anyone who would like to help build this site. Please send a message us with your contact information to firstname.lastname@example.org if you have tech knowledge and we’ll set you up with Todd (L.A.) to start building :).
The march for supporting Bradley Manning was held in Pershing Square, downtown L.A. and was attended by a hundred or so people. 5 minutes into the march a person wearing a Guy Fawkes mask was arresting for being on the street for longer than it took the officer to reach over and grab him (now known as J-Walking). The LAPD’s attempt to intimidate and harass protestors remains strong. Later in the evening a candlelight vigil was held for Bradley and the street in front of the court house where many protestors lined the sidewalks and steps with signs. It wasn’t long before scores of LAPD were present and performing the same antagonistic tactics. By provoking an otherwise peaceful crowd, they managed to arrest 7 more people. The area next to the Court House was home to the original park for the Occupy LA camp which was fenced off after the occupiers were evicted. The protestors decided the fence was a great place to hang their signs. The police for some reason weren’t going to allow it. They found more ammunition to, yet again, round up the “terrorists”! It was a disgusting display of oppression and civil rights violations. I don’t think they got the memo “WE ARE NOT GOING AWAY…….WE ARE THE 99% AND SO ARE YOU!”
We met with Brian and Amy who filled us in on the Occupy Visalia movement. Lots of ideas were shared and once again solutions for the many problems we face as a nation were found. As we go camp to camp, city to city we find the resounding messages ….WE NEED MAJOR CHANGE! We want to thank Amy & Brian for inviting us into their home and making us welcome in the great town of Visalia. Keep up the great work you’re doing! We need more like you.
Unfortunately we missed the General Assembly in Fresno, but did manage to have a conversation with two gentleman who enlightened us on the issues facing the Occupy there. The courts were trying to pass an ordinance that would make it unlawful to protest overnight in any part of the city. Right now, as it is, protestors must remove any tent or sleeping apparatus from the park to the sidewalk by late evening, but the new law would take away that as well.
Our encounter with the two individuals was enlightening with regard to focusing our attention to the flawed present juvenile system that really increase the chance of repeat offences rather than help to provide solutions to the problems faced but our youth of today who find themselves in trouble at an early age. We, the 99% have solutions to help deal with this if anyone is interested in listening!
At 5:30 am we met with others at the B.A.R.T. where private buses took us to the Ports. There were about 500 people protesting at the 3 main ports around 5:30 am. Trucks lined the streets waiting to hear the arbitrators decision on whether to close the Port. The 7am shift was shut down. Protestors by the 1000’s gathered again for the evening march from downtown Frank Ogawa Plaza to the Ports, where the media lined the roads in anticipation of what might happen. Much to their dismay, I’m sure, it was peaceful and very light spirited. The masses joined together at Port 55 and celebrated as nothing I’ve seen thus far. It was a very moving experience. When the 99% finally have a voice, it’s worth listening! We advise the government (and their large Corporate Partners) to start listening so we can begin to fix what is terribly wrong in the Country!
Last night we met up with Mel and Cory who are “Unity Walk” and started out from Tacoma. We heard in Redding that they had just come through before us. Jeanette was kind enough to put us in touch with each other and we met here in Davis finally. Spent many hours in the RV discussing the issues at large and things we felt were terribly wrong with our society as it is now. The money in politics, the wall street corruption and mainly our education system needing total revamp. The most interesting of conversations we’ve had thus far. The camps are filled with smart, talented people who GET IT!
Lots of sunshine, beautiful surroundings and great conversation today! We made signs in the park for the RV. Food not Bombs brought in lunch today and fed everyone in the park as they’ve done for 15 years. Steve, Roger and Mateo worked diligently to provide fresh wholesome meals for all in need and we thank them for doing such a wonderful job.
Later we met with the “occupy solutions” folks and sat around collecting ideas on what we see as resolutions for the various issues and concerns of the “Occupy” movement. We discovered a lot of talent in this small group of about 10. Each person contributed to a very engaging conversation and WE DO have great ideas that would make this a better Country, if not world. If only the Government would start listening to its people.
Tomorrow, Oakland will bring a different kind of day, with an expected peaceful protest during a Port shutdown which we will be attending and supporting!
Attended the Ukiah GA tonight and met up with “Occupy” members at icup (internet cafe). We watched the movie Walmart and while it wasn’t shocking it was definitely profound to see the amount of money they make and the little that goes back into their employees. Walmart DOES cost us money. They get loads of grants and take away local shops where sometimes people have worked for generations. If you haven’t seen it you should. We all like the great prices….but consider the real cost and try to shop local! The town of Ukiah will be having a “Festive Demonstration at the site of proposed Walmart to protest. They would like 200 people to come out to help educate the community.
Someone mentioned we should try to see Jim Lorrety on PBS who did a great show this morning on Occupy San Diego, Oklahoma City and Boise Idaho.
Ruth and her sister gave me the name “Peak Moment TV” as something to check out. It’s put on by Janaia Donalson from Nevada City. There is an organization called “Citizens for Sustainable Commerce” which is fighting to keep local jobs.
Annie Esposato writes for the Medicino County Independant and would like to keep in touch. She told me Ukiah was a progressive town of about 19,000 in the city limits. She mentioned the town fought against DDR a huge National Development Co. who wanted to put in a large mall and 750 upscale housing. The people won!
Norman Soloman is running for congress and he is well supported by the Occupy group. He has been very outspoken and supportive of the movement publicaly and has also attended meetings. Everyone should help vote him in